McCamy Taylor's Journal
Member since: Tue Nov 9, 2004, 06:05 PM
Number of posts: 16,539
Number of posts: 16,539
Here is my fiction website: http://home.earthlink.net/~mccamytaylor/ My political cartoon site: http://www.grandtheftelectionohio.com/
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Yes, it is like comparing apples and oranges. So let me get a little bit more specific. I am comparing small towns in west Texas with small towns in southern Colorado (the "poor" part of the state). Both are semi arid, flat terrained. The towns themselves appear to be about the same age. Their old downtowns have buidings from the same era. Both have economies that rely heaviy upon agriculture and the cattle industry.
After travelling through both in the space of a week, here is my conclusion:
Any state that does not legalize marijuana and accept the Medicaid expansion is loco. The legal weed is easy. Every town has a dispensary (or dispensaries). Every town is full of tourists who chose Colorado over a whole bunch of other western states, because of the legal weed. And by every town I mean cities as large as Denver all the way down to the tiniest little local market town. Eateries are full. People who smoke get the muchies. Hotels and motels are full. Small town store fronts are full. Compare this to the typical small town in Texas in which the old main street is boarded up, the only reliable businesses the Quickee Marts on the highways that cater to the folks driving through. The weed tourists are NOT all young kids with no money. Marijuana is a draw for Baby Boomers, middle aged couples who have lots of money to spend. Folks who know how to have a good time without raising (too much) hell.
And now an aside. Weed does nothing for me. However, legalized marijuana has attracted a crowd of tourists with whom I feel very comfortable. Everyone, native or visitor is so friendly, whether they are high or not. The people are more free spirited. They smile more easily. They do not go out of their way to cut your off in traffic. They hold the doors. The vibe is a lot like Amsterdam, one of the friendliest places I have ever visited.
Now, I realize that in a few years, Colorado will have to compete with other states to be the Amsterdam of the US. However, they are getting a head start on everyone else. Once you get the tourists used to visiting your state, they keep coming. Once you use tourism to finance more attractions for tourists---better restaurants, more parks, more public art----the tourists keep coming. And tourism is easy money that benefits the local economy without spoiling the local environment or creating an eyesore. On the contrary, in Denver, all the businesses are putting up public art. My favorite----the line of grates in the sidewalk along Curtis street across from Sam's 3. When you step on them, they make the sounds of cows, pigs, chickens, yodellers. Awesome, whether you are high or not (I was not). And fun for the whole family.
Now, about the Medicaid expansion. I saw bright, shiny new medical and dental clinics---in small towns! Remember that health care infrastructure spending is second only to education spending in the benefits it provides to the local economy. Health care spending pays for lots of jobs and it results in a healthier work force.
I did see a lot of disabled folks, especially in Denver, who may have been attracted to the state because they can get their medical marijuana without fear of harassment. But, since the state expanded Medicaid, these folks are insured. They can get all the health care they need, not just the THC. They are not a drain on the economy, because they are insured. When they get sick, the local hospital does not have to write off their care. The local homeowners do not have to pay more in taxes to keep up county hospitals so that the private hospitals will not go under. The small towns are not losing their hospitals...
Compare to Texas, which along with Georgia and other states, said "No" to the Medicaid expansion. Note that so called Red States never say "No" to free federal money. Had the cash been intended for a military base or more roads or even a bunch of bridges to nowhere, the Red State governors would have been holding out their hands saying "Gimme!" But because this was health care---Obama Care---most of them decided that their low income workers would rather die than be beholden to the federal government.
Small towns in Texas are losing their access to health care. Emergency rooms and hospitals are closing. Doctors do not move in. If a doc wants to work in a small town, he or she will go to one of the states that expanded Medicaid. That way the doc gets paid. A real no brainer. Texas is now training family doctors who are fleeing the state after they graduate from their residency programs. And lack of access to primary care is one of the major health problems facing the country right now.
What happens to Texas, when all its new trained FPs end up in Colorado or New Mexico? Its rural health care infrastructure falls apart. What business is going to relocate to a small town in Texas that has no doctors or hospitals? None. Even if the company does not care abnout its workers, its managers and executives want a place to get treated if they get sick.
So, if you are a small town in Texas, and you are sick of watching the cars speed through without stopping, maybe you should get on down to Austin and start lobbying. Legal weed and the Medicaid expansion can be your road to financial health, too. Even if you do not attract the tourists, your residents will be healthier (because they will have insurance and a place to use it) and you will cut down on the amount of tax money that goes to pay For Profit prisons to house low risk marijuana users.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Mon Jun 29, 2015, 12:05 PM (6 replies)
Before you say "Where's the proof" this is a thought piece, put together from some reading I did today and some recent advances about MS.
In a nutshell, MS is now thought to be due to HLA mediated immune factors that were intended to help early humans fight off chronic hookworm infections. Take away the hookworms and some people's immune systems start going after nerve tissue instead.
What I am about to discuss does not apply to all diabetics, just those with a subtype that does not match either type 1 or type 2. Called Latent Autoimmune Diabetes of Adulthood, this types starts off like type 2 and then slowly progresses to type 1 insulin dependence over the course of years. It is associated with the GAD Ab.
While researching central sleep apnea for a new book, I got off on a tangent about GAD antibiodes which are associated with a type of diabetes. GAD Ab is also associated with some types of autoimmune thryoiditis and neurologic diseases such as Stiff Man Syndrome (look it up) now called Stiff Person Syndrome because researchers probably got tired of all the snickering.The reason I am beginning to suspect that the GAD Ab might have something to do with our inborn infectious disease immunity--a study revealed that 10% of European Diabetics are GAD Ab pos type, 16% diabetics from Congo and China are this type---and no one from Papau New Guinea in this study had the GAD Ab pos type. Nobody. As in what is so different about Papau, New Guinea?
Now, it is possible that no one in Papau New Guinea has bred with anyone from off the island ever and that therefore, no one on the island has this gene. But that is not very likely. It is much more likely that Papau still has an infection that has become relatively less common in other parts of the world.
Recall that multiple sclerosis used to never ever occur in anyone who grew up in the US South. All that changed a couple of decades again which led me to wonder "What did people in the old South do that people in the new South do not do?" Answer, get exposed to hookworms by running around outside barefoot all summer. And sure enough researchers in England have found that if you give MS sufferers low, controlled hookworm infections their MS gets better. Those HLA coded inbred antibodies that were supposed to fight hookworms stop attacking normal body tissue and start attacking hook worms again.
So, I suggest that someone keep track of which infectious diseases are highly prevelant in Papau, which are going down due to public health intervention as well as measuring the percentage of diabetics who are GAD Ab pos in Papau. I suspect that we will find that some parasite such as schistosomias is protective against GAD Ab autoimmune disease. I suspect a parasite, because worms, being closer in biology to humans than say a bacterium, are more likely to have tissues that are similar to ours. Meaning that an antibody that evolved over time to fight a common parasite could also recognize a human body tissue if the parasite is not around.
Again, this will not help all diabetics. But if even 10% could avoid the progression to insulin dependence through a carefully controlled probiotic infection, it would cut public health spending a bunch.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sun Jun 28, 2015, 07:00 PM (3 replies)
A person can be prejudiced by omission. Meaning, if you don't speak out against official corruption or oppression, you are just as guilty as the ones actually wielding the stun guns and clubs.
If you think the brutal war being waged against young men of color does not affect you, and therefore, you decline to get involved, you are supporting the killings. Worse yet, you are benefitting from them. Because an important part of white privilege is appointing a scapegoat, a group that wil be blamed for all social ills--even their own murder when they get shot down in cold blood in a Church. "They should have been carrying weapons," says the NRA. As if a Black person who does not take extra steps to protect himself against violent extremists is somehow complicit in his own death, the way a woman in a short skirt is "just asking" for it. If the Blacks or Latinos are guilty of everything, then the white man is guilty of nothing. He will automatically be offered the job and the raise. If he makes a mistake--say he precipitates a mortgage crisis--he can blame it on the minority members who were forced into escalating payment mortgages even though they qualified for fixed rate mortgages. If he commits a crime, he can avoid jail time---it would not be fair to put an "innocent" white man who made a little "mistake" in with all those "guilty" minorities. If he asks for a loan, he will get it. His schools will receive extra funding and he will get the best education that public money can buy. If he is threatened, the police will be there for him. If he commits a crime against a member of a minority group, the criminal justice system will take his side.
If you think that the brutal wars being waged in western Africa do not affect you, and therefore, you decline to pay any attention to them, you are supporting the killings. Though western imperialism in Africa is officially dead, unofficially, we continue to send in money and arms in exchange for the continent's valuable resources. We are the reason that children are forced to become soldiers. Those blood diamonds are on our hands. We are rich, because so much of the world is kept poor. And yes, even those of us who do not feel "rich" compared to the 1% have it pretty good compared to the child bride in Africa who is about to be shot by another child, this one wielding a gun manufactured in America.
If you think that contraception is a "woman's" issue (unless you happen to get stuck with a child support suit) then you are enjoying male privilege. In this country, when young woman are denied access to birth control and abortions, they are forced into underage motherhood. Once they drop out of highschool to have a baby, they are doomed to a life of pink collar servitude forced to work for a fraction of what men earn, denied promotions, unable to quit because they absolutely have to put food on the table for the kids. The fact that so many women will work in so many crap jobs forever allows men to pick and choose the better jobs. They get promotions---because they never miss work taking to kids to the doctor. They can pay their (female) workers less and demand more of them.
Anyone who says "It's not my problem" is part of the problem. No one is allowed to sit on the fence. We are all political animals---and the ones of us who claim to be apolitical are simply the ones who like the boat the way it is and see no reason to rock it.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Wed Jun 24, 2015, 04:05 PM (0 replies)
Back in 2008, during the primary election, I wrote a little piece which I called "The Mother and Child Reunion" for DU, in which I predicted that once the food fight was over, Clinton and Obama would be BFFs at the Convention. A lot of DUers who had spent the primary calling Clinton the "enemy" (because she stood in the way of the Obama nomination) disagreed. I was correct. Oh, I got one minor point wrong. I thought she would be the VP nominee. In retrospect, asking for SOS was a much better career move. Everyone loves the SOS.
Eight years later, I see many of the We Love Obama and We Can't Stand Clinton folks attacking her once again--even though their man, Obama has all but anointed her his sucessor. Even though her poll numbers look great. Even though she has been the target of a right wing conspiracy since before some of them were born--and the right wing does not waste its conspiracies on corporatist candidates who cater to Wall Street and suck up to Big Oil.
I suspect that many who talked bad (sometimes even dirty) about Clinton in 2008 are reluctant to change their tones. Doing so would be to admit that they were wrong---or, at least, took a position for political gain (for their candidate Obama) rather than because it was a correct position. No, there is nothing wrong with saying one thing in the primary and another in the general, if it furthers the cause of your political party. That is how elections are won. But some folks like to present themselves as idealogic purists---
Even though the most pacifict of anti-gun pacifists would have no problem discharging a shotgun in the face of the criminal who is trying to kill their child. All things are relative. I will say that again. All things are relative. Except when they are black and white words printed on the page or on the Internet. Then, words have a habit of assuming a meaning way in excess of what the author intended.
If you really want to, you can twist and distort the words of anyone to make them mean anything that you want them to mean. And so, if you write "Hillary is a poo poo head" during the primary because she is standing in the way of Obama, eight years later you will have to deal with Google searches that reveal that you once called Hillary a "poo poo head." If you are an amateur like me, who makes no money from political posting, who does it for fun in her free time, because that is what our Founders would have done had they possessed the Internet, so what?
However, if you consider yourself a professional political pundit, you may have a hard time with your cache. You may feel compelled to defend your previously held and now indefensible opinion, for the simple reason that you once posted it above your byline.
Beware this impulse. It is the trap that leads to political obsolescence. Be more like the left's favorite, Robert Byrd, who was more than willing to change. Change is a good thing. You proclaimed that truth in 2008. Yes, you did. I remember the slogans. All the best political pundits have had many changes of heart over the years. Situations change. Economic forces change. People change.
And once the primary is over and Hillary Clinton is the nominee, your favorite candidate is going to be her BFF. Because your favorite candidate is a true Democrat, doing it for the constituency and not for personal gain.
Got that? We do this for the party, for the workers, for the women, the minorities, the immigrants, the GLBT, the Muslims, the Jewish folks, the men who don't want to act all macho 24-7----everyone that the right wing despises. We do not do this for ourselves. And if you catch yourself doing it for yourself, ask "Is my own career as a ____ more important than the lives of those who will die without health care, those who will die in anoter war for oil, those who will die from the damage to the economy that eight more years of GOP rule will bring?"
If you are like most people, your answer to the above with be a resounding "Yes!" Because we all want to be important. We are all the stars of our own lives. In which case, maybe you should give yourself an out, make a little wiggle room so that when Clinton is nominated, you do not have to pull a Chicago 1968 and throw your support behind a third party splitter in order to live with yourself.
Idealism works in a parliamentary system. If you want to be idealistic, get to work changing our current form of government into a parliamentart system. If you want to work withwhat we have now, be prepared to compromise. It is the only way that anything good ever gets done in this country. LBJ sent Humphrey out to wine and dine Congressional Republicans in order to get the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Acts passed. Be more like LBJ and Humphrey and less like Eugene McCarthy.
Speaking of Clean for Gene, the Bernie Sanders 2016 campaign will be one of my all time favorite campaigns, up there with McCarthy 1968, Jackson 1988, and the others who used the primary to get their message across. The Democratic presidential primary is one of the few times when the left wing of the party can make itself heard. Speak up. Force the nation to confront the problems it would rather ignore. Get the word out---
But don't paint yourself into a corner and never ever throw out the baby with the bathwater. We can't afford to lose any more babies.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Tue Jun 23, 2015, 01:24 PM (87 replies)
That is six more times that Eleanor Roosevelt. Clinton got bumped once by Mother Theresa and once by Laura Bush in the wake of 9/11. But other than those two times, she has riden a wave of public approval that no one in this country, male of female can match.
Now, I must admit that I am sad that Clinton has managed to bump Michelle Obama from a position that is often held by the first lady. I love Michelle and she has been a great first lady.
But Hillary Clinton is something special---and Americans know it. Except for that wierd little blip after 9-11 when Americans thought it was their patriotic duty to love the president and his wife, Clinton was the most admired woman during the Bush administration----and she sure as hell did not derive any of her popularity from Bush. During the Obama administration, she has retained her title as the woman that more Americans can agree upon. As much as our nation belittles and disrepects and distrusts women, Americans know in their hearts that Hillary Clinton is strong, she is fair, she has their backs.
Anyone who says that Hillary Clinton can not win the general election is delusional or lying.
I love the way that this primary is shaping up. I love the fact that corperate America is giving Bernie Sanders a platform on which to speak his mind, for the simple reason that Big Business hopes that he will upset Clinton in the primary. I am still pissed at the way that they shut out John and Elizabeth Edwards, who had many of the same things to say, back in 2008, because Wall Street was afraid that Edwards might actually get elected and enact some of the reforms that he and his wife talked about. I hope that the GOP continues to promote Sanders as the Great-Anti-Hillary to its party members. I hope that Bernia Sanders take full advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity for a Socialist to Speak the Truth About America--and not get blacked out by the mainstream media.
But when the food fight is over, I know that Sanders will throw his support behind Clinton. He will do it graciously, the way that Clinton did in 2008 for Obama. Because Democrats know that some battles are bigger than the individual combatants.
Oh, and any Republicans reading this, I am only kidding. Of course, Bernie Sanders will run a third party splitter campaign in the general. You have my word on that. Keep throwing your support his way. Keep getting his message out to the voters. Americans cannot be told too many times that its Bankers are Banksters.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Mon Jun 22, 2015, 10:35 PM (19 replies)
Yes, Pat Buchanan, there really was and is a Southern Strategy. A few years ago---in 2006 to be precise--- on Countdown, Buchanan told Keith Olbermann that the Republicans could keep control of Congress by reminding voters that a Democratic victory would mean a committee chairmanship for Rangel. Even though Buchanan has denied that there ever was a Southern Strategy, he was proof of it at that moment.
For almost fifty years, the Republican Party has been hard at work trying to make sure that Southern white voters are scared shitless of their Black neighbors. The dialogue has changed, but the message is still the same.
Republican strategist Lee Atwater discussed the Southern strategy in a 1981 interview later published in Southern Politics in the 1990s by Alexander P. Lamis.
No, Atwater, you were not doing away with the "racial problem". You were just creating a newer, more acceptable code for your racism. A racism that blamed the mortgage crisis on the minority home owners who were (illegally) forced into high risk mortgages when they qualified for traditional mortgages. A racism that would rather see Americans deprived of health insurance than see a single Black man or woman get treated in time for cancer. A racism that, to this day, demands that young men of color prove that they are not a public menace. What more can we do? Carry crosses on our backs, like Jesus, to show that we mean no one harm? They killed Jesus and they keep killing us---and by us, I mean fellow Americans. Because some hotshot political strategist in a smoke filled room said "If we make them blame the ____s for their problems, we can split their vote and win this election." In Germany, the blanks were the Jews. In the US, the blanks are Blacks. In Burma, the blanks are Muslims.
The Charleston shooter----who does not deserve to have his name mentioned, because he is just a cog in a huge, death machine----thought he was acting in self defense. He thought he was protecting himself from all the bogey men who keep him scared and shaking at night. The joke---macabre, awful, but still a joke, as the devil's temptation of Eve was a joke---is on him. A bunch of rich, corporate fat cats will be laughing all the way to the bank as they dissuade their employees from joining unions by telling them "The unions will give your jobs to Blacks, to Mexicans, to anyone but you."
The election of President Barack Obama saw a new type of Southern strategy emerge among conservative voters. His election is utilized as evidence of a post-racial era to deny the need of continued civil rights legislation, while simultaneously playing on racial tensions and marking him as a "racial bogeyman". Thomas Edge described three parts to this phenomenon saying:
Strange fruit, indeed.
Now pardon me, while I cry.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Fri Jun 19, 2015, 01:19 PM (8 replies)
“The past is never dead. It's not even past.”
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Fri Jun 19, 2015, 12:31 PM (0 replies)
We saw it in the 1960s. Being anti-war or anti-segregation was hip, cool, socially acceptable. Being anti-sexual discrimination made one a "bra burner", "frigid", a "man hater", a "castrating" you know what. Civil rights activists were lauded. Feminists were targets of ridicule. Leftist women were expected to shut up and put out---they would get their "equality" through a kind of trickle down effect.
Why are we, as a society, so scared of strong uppity women?
I found this interesting article online. In Europe in the Middle Ages, women 1) who could read and write, 2) who expressed their spirituality by being active in the Church or as mystics 3) who expressed political opinions who 4) wielded power and 5) who worked outside the home were more likely to be accused of being witches. Even their attempts to promote the Church (which was conducting the Inquisition) were viewed as being deviant, suspect. If they looked like they were trying to do good deeds which took them outside the home and into the public world, it was all an act. They had devious, hidden motives. Joan of Arc--who claimed to hear the voice of the angles--had to be a witch. Only a witch would attempt to lead a nation. Only a witch would have that kind of political power. A woman with political power was dangerous. A woman who could move people with a spiritual message was dangerous---
I look around at my country now, and I see a lot more of the same.
Don't be afraid of uppity women. Women with political power are not necessarily doing it for "Satan" or in order to denigrate men or because they have penis envy. Women with political power are not freaks. Some of them are concerned citizens who feel compelled to help others. Some of them are very good at what they do.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Wed Jun 17, 2015, 12:32 AM (75 replies)
Don't tell me you have forgotten the "Race Memo"! That was the document that was distributed by an Obama staffer to members of the press in order to interject race into the 2008 race. The "Race Memo" would have been devastating to the Obama campaign had it come to light in the fall of 2008, after the primary when the GOP could have used it to sully Obama's "nice guy" image. The Huffington Post realized what was up---they sprang the trap eight months too early when they published the "Race Memo" in January 2008. For some reason, the rest of the MSM pretended that they had never heard of it---even though news reporting in the weeks following the memo's release was obviously influenced by it. This strange media silence got me worried. Did the MSM plan to sit on the story and then suddenly pretend to "find" it after the Democratic convention? Not good. That was why I wrote what I wrote in 2008. There was no way in Hell that I was going to allow any corporate media whore to claim that Obama "stole" the nomination from Clinton. Obama would be nominated by a party that knew all about the "Race Memo" and did not give a fuck.
Why dig up the sorry carcass of this sorry piece of political dirty trickery now? It has come to my attention that some people think that they can take advantage of American's notorious political amnesia. (Go watch "Gore Vidal: The United States of Amnesia" It's on Netflix!) They think they can prompt people to recall that they heard something way back in 2008 about how Hillary Clinton made a bunch of racist attacks on Obama, as she attempted to "crib death" his campaign.
If we are going to take a trip down memory lane to 2008, then I think we should see all the sights and remember everything that made that year so much fun. So, here it is, one from the vaults. Here is what I wrote in 2008:
Putting All The Race Cards on the Table: "The Race Memo"
And now it looks like some want to start Race Wars Round III. Not cool. Not smart. And not very Democratic. Divide and Conquer is the GOP's favorite dirty trick.
Oh, and will the real author of the race memo please stand up? Back in 2008, I thought it might be Rove. Since then, I have changed my mind. I don't think Rove was smart enough to pull that stunt. I suspect Pat Buchanan was the real author. Buchanan was pretty slick, once upon a time.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Thu May 28, 2015, 03:00 AM (2 replies)
The Suprax drug rep came by recently with some coupons. Since Suprax is older than my son (now 22) I asked "How come Suprax doesn't have a generic yet?"
She just smiled and shrugged her shoulders.
Not a good sign. We have all seen generic drugs go back onto patent only (colchicine for gout) or stay on indefinite name brand only status. Why was Suprax---unique in that it is basically an oral form of third generation cephalosporins which are so good at treating UTIs---still so damn expensive?
Apparently, Wyath's patent in Suprax expired in 2003.
In July 2002, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals (Collegeville, Pennsylvania) discontinued manufacturing cefixime (Suprax®) in the United States. In October 2002, the company ceased marketing cefixime tablets (200 mg and 400 mg) because of depletion of company inventory. Wyeth's patent for cefixime expired on November 10, 2002. No other pharmaceutical company manufactures or sells cefixime tablets in the United States. Wyeth will continue to sell cefixime suspension (100 mg/5 ml) until March 31, 2003, or until company inventory is depleted, whichever is sooner.
It decided to stop making the drug, which the WHO considers an essential antibiotic. What happened next is truly surreal. Lupin Ltd got FDA approval to market the drug exclusively in the US.
Lupin Ltd today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) has approved the company's Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) for Cefixime Suspension 100mg/5ml. Earlier this month, Lupin received approval for its Cefixime Tablet 400 mg ANDA.
How could one company get the exclusive patent for a drugs whose patent expired? Why did it take 11 years for the FDA to allow a generic version to be produced and sold in this country?
Dayton, NJ (April 20, 2015)
Lupin has not taken the competition well. Their stocks have gone down in value.
"The earlier-than-expected generic competition for Suprax and Antara has been a negative surprise. LPC may pursue acquisition to scale up the brand business near term. An acquisition may be marginally earnings accretive in the near term. However, we are less certain of considerable value accretion," the report said.
Earlier than expected? Did they expect to own the rights forever?
If someone understands how this happened, please let the rest of us know. I can see no reason why patients have to pay hundreds of dollars for an antibiotic that is over two decades old.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Mon May 25, 2015, 07:58 PM (9 replies)